The Price Of Safety

Over at The Astute Bloggers Avi Green is discussing the planned attack on JFK Airport in New York that was foiled by an informant who was recruited by the police with the offer of a lienient sentence on a drug crime.

Reliapundit has this to say in the comments:

if drugs were made legal as m simon wants then we'd lose this valuable stream of info.

seems to me we need the death penalty to have something to bargain down against; (without it there less leverage to get co-conspirators in some crimes to turn state's evidence), and we need a drug war to get criminals to turn into canaries.

To which I replied:
Of course. How could I be so stupid.

We need to support a program that does not accomplish what it is supposed to accomplish, persecutes the traumatized, is responsible for 1/2 the murders in the country, kills a few innocents every year in botched police raids, and is responsible for as much as much as 85% of the non-drug crime in order to prevent terrorist attacks. Because the FBI is otherwise incompetent to ferret out terrorists.

You know, I bet if we made guns illegal we could get a lot more informants on the street and really empower the secret police.

Tyranny will keep you safe from terrorism. But, is it a good idea?

Cross Posted at Power and Control and at The Astute Bloggers

posted by Simon on 06.04.07 at 12:34 PM










Comments

That's one of the more creative defenses of the drug war I've come across.

Maybe the goal is a little smaller. Maybe instead of claiming that creating informants through plea deals helps us defeat terrorism, perhaps it is enough to argue that creating informants here outweighs the fact that the drug war is aiding the Taliban in Afghanistan.

tim maguire   ·  June 4, 2007 2:48 PM

Maybe if we would allow rubber hoses back into the interrogation rooms .... but I digress.

mdmhvonpa   ·  June 4, 2007 3:34 PM

Why aren't cigarrettes and other nicotine fixes banned? After all, they guaranteed to shorten your life span DRAMATICALLY.

The problem is, people WANT their death sticks. If we banned ciggies, a huge black market would emerge. All that sin tax money would go into the mafia and triad coffers instead of the govt's. Basically, it would be like the Prohibition Era all over again.

So how about drugs? They are currently banned in most countries, and can get you the death penalty for possession in many. Why not legalize drugs, thus destroying the illegal market and drying up the cash flow to the gangstas?

One problem may be that while nicotine and alcohol are addictive and life-threatening, drugs are much more so. One puff or one margarita seldom gets people addicted for life, but a shot of pure heroin will.

It may take a few puffs to damage your lungs and a few bottles to kaput your liver, but recent research claims that certain drugs immediately change the very neurons in your nervous system (which contributes to the addiction cravings).

Just take a look around and count the number of supposedly sane, responsible voters who are nonetheless heavy drinkers or chain smokers. Just look at that famed consumer self control1.

Now imagine if you introduced cheap, legal, highly addictive drugs into society. There goes the economy as nobody shows up for work, constantly high and spaced out as they are.

Heck, it might even be the best way to take down terrorist-sponsoring states (along with some nekkid wimmen pix). Britian did it to China with opium.

Just my honest opinion.

Scott   ·  June 4, 2007 8:31 PM
Scott   ·  June 4, 2007 8:36 PM

A tyrannical police state will stop networked groups of terrorists until the state's hollow brittle shell shatters.

Robert   ·  June 6, 2007 1:10 AM

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